Reviewing ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ season 13 premiere

Gabby Seed

The 13th season of Shonda Rhimes’ hit show “Grey’s Anatomy,” centering around multi-talented, but equally dysfunctional surgeon Meredith Grey, premiered this past Thursday, with 8.8 million viewers tuning in to get their long-awaited medical drama fix. Season 12 ended with a handful of cliffhangers, a Rhimes trademark that consistently leaves her fans hungry for more.

At the end of season 12, Grey’s best friend and confidante, Alex Karev, attacks surgical intern Andrew DeLuca after misinterpreting an encounter between DeLuca and Jo Wilson, Karev’s longtime girlfriend. Additionally, trauma surgeon April Kepner undergoes an emergency cesarean section performed by surgical resident Ben Warren in Grey’s kitchen.

For fans, any and all questions about the state of Karev, DeLuca and Kepner were answered in Thursday’s premiere. DeLuca is rushed into Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital as a result of Karev’s violent actions; Karev, however, does not reveal himself as the perpetrator.

Once ever-intuitive Grey discovers Karev was behind the assault, she sides with him until it becomes an ethical dilemma. Both Karev and Grey learn that DeLuca did not mean Wilson any harm in the misinterpreted encounter. Karen turns himself in and is arrested for aggravated assault.

Kepner and her baby are thriving after the hasty caesarean section. Catherine Avery, the newborn’s paternal grandmother, makes a fuss about the inclusion of her surname in the baby’s full name. Regardless, Kepner’s story remains relatively calm in comparison to the storms so often created by Rhimes.

I myself am an avid fan of “Grey’s,” and was keen to watch the premiere as soon as I had a chance. Though I would eagerly watch something as simple as a toilet paper commercial produced by Rhimes, I was disappointed that the episode lacked many of the traditional tropes for which the show is known and beloved.

The episode was almost completely devoid of real “medical scenes.” Choppy conversations seemed to outnumber tense moments hovering over a patient or deliberating over complex treatment plans.

“Grey’s” fans speak a language of their own, one that’s adapted from the show. We like to believe we could clip an aneurysm if called upon to do so. We know it’s imperative to say either “Charge to 300!” or “I need a crash cart!” when a beloved character is dying.

But in this season premiere, I was disheartened to feel like an outsider in one of my favorite shows. There’s a certain degree of participation activity that comes about when a movie or television show has a cult following. We fall in love with the characters, and we want to be a part of the scenes, even if just by yelping medical terms we don’t necessarily understand.

Unfortunately, recent seasons of the show have gotten so dark and dramatic that participation seems almost irreverent as well as irrelevant. I tend not to give up on my favorite TV series, but I will be anxiously awaiting a “Grey’s” episode reminiscent of the light-heartedness of earlier seasons.

Gabby Seed is a columnist, contact her at [email protected].